It seemed like we were all out in a thick of smoke that summer. It was a season of anti-climax. It seemed as though each and every one of us was thoroughly aware of the infinitude of possibilities existent on this planet and yet that nothing would come of this endlessness but just that—more leeway; more endlessness. With this armour; this bearing of sublime futility, we carried on in our day-to-day lives. Reasonably, what else could we have ever hoped to accomplish?

 

 

In those months I made a concerted effort to pay heed as much as possible to my femininity, to any goddess-like qualities I might possess. I unintentionally (at least on a conscious level) decided to correct the numbing void in my heart with a wide spectrum of righteously defended yet highly disruptive distractions. You know, it’s sort of funny how something like a kiss can make you feel so much, or so absolutely little. Or how the absence of one (kiss, that is) can do just as much or just as little. Or how an awakening can be both beautiful and horrible at the same time. Sort of funny, but the knee-slapping, side-splitting existential humour that we are all privileged enough as human beings to have limitless access to is not always easy to appreciate—especially when the joke’s on you. And what a lack of scapegoats in this blameless world of mirrors!

 

 

As clumsy as our dreaming became that summer, it was never right to assume that immediate action (or non-action for that matter) was necessary. We all catapulted to nearby saloons and salons to meet for dehydrating, yet riveting gossip exchanges: all the while wading through the inter-ocean for some kind of ancient love potion.

 

 

I sat in my open bedroom inhaling the wind that prayer flags sent swirling on the balcony, which mingled quite nicely with the cloudy tango of white wine in my glass. A swarm of wasted words suddenly latched themselves onto my underwear and began dragging them down to ankle-view constellations. I wanted to touch myself in places that no one had ever dared venture. I wanted to peek inside my body, perhaps I would be lucky enough to catch a glimpse –some biological clue perhaps, as to why I was the way I was, why I wanted to be lonely. I wanted to caress breath again and save my smoke inhalation strictly for times of self -praise. I wanted to hug myself warm. Even though the all-too infamous ‘other’ that so many of us wish into our lives did appear sometimes in my stray cat brain, I believed in his face less and less. Formless in my dreams but to know my heart’s sheer desire, he would curb my tendency towards self-attack and take me swimming deep within his folds of wonder. I loved to wake and rise up but to doubt and fall sleeping.

 

 

One blurry cocaine morning I decided never to ingest poison again without contemplating love. Never, ever again. After five attempts at keeping a glass of water down I slept away my throbbing brain-ache, however the one in my doleful heart remained. I called in sick for the second time ever in my seven years as a working citizen in this wonderful working world. The lady upstairs must’ve wondered at my retching.

 

 

I awoke again as the sunset (I, being the sunset) and fell upon one of my roommate’s books: Rumi—‘The Glance’—Songs of Soul-Meeting. I chose a poem at random:

 

 

The Taste of Morning

 

 

Time’s knife slides from the sheath,

As a fish from where it swims.

 

Being closer and closer is the desire

of the body. Don’t wish for union!

 

There’s a closeness beyond that. Why

would God want a second God? Fall in

 

love in such a way that it frees you

from any connecting. Love is the soul’s

 

light, the taste of morning, no me, no

we, no claim of being. These words

 

are the smoke the fire gives off as it

absolves its defects, as eyes in silence,

 

tears, face. Love cannot be said.

 

 

Sometimes my cynicism shames me. Other times it does not. It was 7:43 PM. I decided to get dressed, take a walk, and perhaps learn something new with my day.

 

 

Collective consciousness is a funny thing. As with most notions, its drollness stems from its glaring truth. For those who are unfamiliar with the term, it has to do with humans (possibly other life forms as well) and the idea that we are inevitably, and sometimes eerily, on the same page. There are a billion different facets of this truth and they exist on many different levels in many different realms of perception. For example: I don’t know a single person (myself included) who did not find this winter to be the least painful one ever (in terms of being inexplicably depressed). However, most of us came in much closer contact with the void when spring began to show. Feelings of apathy, of discontent, satisfaction, joy, and lust—whatever it is, these outlooks come in waves and they hit us all. Sometimes our situational similarity is blatant, other times it may require explaining, or (re)searching. Anyhow, this whole collective consciousness deal allows us (sometimes whether we’re aware of it or not) to become in tune with the universe, so to speak. Or, put another way, we are open to the universe getting in touch with us in any number of random ways. When one realizes that we are all fighting our own perceived demons; that we must all travel unflinchingly co-existent arteries to get to the same heart, it becomes very clear that we are all in fact, one lone being.

 

Along the same vein, ‘synchronicity’ is another term that many have coined. The word ‘coincidence’ has become out-dated in some spheres. It implies two simultaneous occurrences, whereas, synchronicity refers to one very obviously aligned happening, or planetary movement. Personally, I have found that people tend to be more in touch with this obviousness when they are living highly stimulating lives, or traveling about. In my own experience, hitchhiking was the ticket. I like to call this particular doorway to the divine the ‘galactic highway’. I can’t think of any other way to put it. I very rarely feel as closely in touch with the divine forces that be as I do when I’m on an open highway, thumb in air. I stand and wait for some car to stop and some door to open and some person who, for whatever reason, has decided to stop and invite me into their force field for a while. It always fits perfectly.

 

My head hurt. I thought about death and our ever-lurking date with it. Impending mortality struck me with rash biting whiteness; or rather, the constancy of change did. Nothing is impending. It all just is; even the zygotes of unborn potential have already made our party list. The aftermath of wine glasses and cigarette butts have yet to flood minds of unborn poets everywhere. Ah breath…indifferent memories trickling down our collective backside; limbless dewdrops forced to go along with the current. However, we may even find comfort among these all too familiar party tricks, thought my mind. Painless in their never-ending nature we may marvel at their power. It’s not so much the death I fear. It’s the pain that we’ve pegged as death’s companion. And even our good ‘ol pain pal saddens me much more than the poor lad frightens me. Disappointingly, so many have died without love. Perhaps death is merely a dosage of pain, and nothing more. And by the same token, pain a dosage of death. They hold hands, wistfully, pain and death do, re-enacting a play of two woeful lovers, spinning merrily towards stellar, sorrowful oblivion within the open-ended confinement of a heart such as this earth.

 

My indulgence in tragedy and magnificence (being one and the same) lasted all afternoon. Staring into random city chasms my world would not be altered. Somehow, deep in a wishful future, things would be different--but their context would not be any less beautiful (or tragic) to revel in. I thought of our collective childhood and how it could no longer serve as an excuse for basking and bawling as we have done so far and continue to do. To do so was mere procrastination. To do so was verging on blasphemous oppression (our potential to make the world a better place being the wrongfully neglected victim). Should we all of a sudden come to interview a child that had been locked away for years in a broom closet it would not be a long shot away from encountering the same oppressed potential of which I now speak. Blah blah yadeeyah… I thought of the poem. ‘Being closer is the desire of the body. Why would God want a second God? …. Don’t wish for union! …Fall in love in such a way that it frees you from any connecting…’ Yup. Right. ‘This is why every muscle in my body hurts’, I thought. ‘Here there is something I must let go of.’

 

~~~~

 

That night I had a dream about my father…a nightmare in slow motion. I awoke, oblivious to the dream but later realized that actual occurrences are not necessarily what we find most frightening; rather, the sheer molassesticity of some dreams, whether they take place in waking life or not are what I really find horrifying.

 

My standards are flexible. I do not need much. My needs are elastic. I have no one from whom to seek approval. Or rather, I choose not to seek anyone of such a nature. (That I do, regardless, is both hearsay and fact combined, which is to be somewhat expected as I am, irreparably human). Any how, I often seem to go through the motion picture only really encountering (or choosing, rather), extreme scenarios suited for de-bodied beings, but I appear to have a body; this poses problem days and leaves me with an overriding sense of confusion. When one realizes that there is no one but oneself to charm, it often leads to dark submission before the mourning light appears, followed by certainty, followed by uncertainty. ‘Why?’ you may ask. Why am I pressing you, some everywhere-at-once audience to endure my indulgent homage of meandering magnitude? It is simple, dear heart-kin: some days I must yelp at sidewalks to survive, and that is no way to live. Or rather, it is a way to live, a common one I might add, and this satisfies me to the point of sadness. In either case, a fistful of words will serve as potent gear for the sweet battalion (on-going) between high sky and red earth, which we all have the potential to notice yet seldom few acknowledge.

 

~~~~

 

A blind spot of pain lent itself to substitute tears which may have otherwise flown, heated over my face. My hand idle by my side, a naked body (could it be mine?) heaving in response--but pleasure comes only in the form of fear (sometimes) my dear. No, I don’t need somebody to touch it. I just need something to want—I just need something to make me notice and remember past lives, pretty colors, stenciled flowers, craving another’s flesh—not to eat, no, just to bite. At last, the hardwood floor glittered emerald—wishing that it too could heave like me. But I fell asleep and awoke simultaneously. I exhaled with excitement and wanted nothing more than to scream and scream.

 

Deny as we may it must be addressed that we make everything up as we go along. We are our own worlds. Our feet in the sand, our heads in the clouds, our bodies are seventy-five percent water-- same as the physical earth on which we appear to dwell. Just as mother earth compensates for damages inflicted upon her with any combination of ‘natural disasters’ (floods, hurricanes, droughts, fires, etc.) Our bodies exhibit their own ‘natural disasters’ or illnesses, only these terms have a negative connotation. Why? Because the physical human condition is at stake; the physical human life…Just as the ongoing process of homeostasis in our bodies allows for a certain level of equilibrium to be present in our bodies/shells/vessels, Gaia kills off unnecessary parasites and cools or warms herself accordingly…What then, is to be said of our minds? What of our minds? This is what I’m getting at. Is the mind a mere side effect? A casualty? A head-sole (as opposed to a foot one) with no proof of ever having existed? One would be very hard up to unravel the mysteries of our alleged ‘mind’ without, well—a mind.

 

It doesn’t matter and it never will. That my darlings, is the beauty. That is the tragedy. These are the ways in which ‘It’ chooses to matter.

 

A moth flew into my room as I sat alternately typing and staring through the rooms of my apartment, doors flung open, noticing the flow from bedroom to living room; living room to kitchen, seeing all these rooms at once; separate; attached; a simultaneous tunnel of color. Let us not forget the succession of shades, as we forget to blink, as our eyes dart about, as our pupils spew paint. Pink, turquoise, cream, burgundy. Moth and I share air. We are inconsequential.

 

I have many friends, truly, I do, (as I contemplate the nature of companionship) but I often avoid them so that I may frolic, naked, and not be made to speak…You know, sometimes I even think that I may have a child someway. But how exactly? Does one go about that?

(As I was saying, it was a summer not to remember to remember to forget…a summer solstice of the soul. Everybody seemed to be lighting up and the accumulation of smoke was a cumulative haze of our one mind’s disarray. In fact, it was the chintziest summer I’d ever known. I couldn’t really identify its start or finish if the stars had asked me personally. All I knew for sure was: we must really love ourselves, on a profound level—apparently not a surface one, if we still persist so with this sickly sweet determined pursuit of existence…and during summer, no less.)

 

~~~~

 

A fetus, born to dive, floats away into the starry summer wind. Up, up and away the little baby body goes—whoosh…with the sky for a blanket, language can only take us so far. (Our tongues coil and pronounce; our minds separate and denounce.) Faster, higher, closer to a place of knowledge; wisdom; heart; beauty; catastrophe: ‘These words are the smoke the fire gives off as it absolves its defects, as eyes in silence…’

Walking downhill, I saw leaves falling.

 

 

 

Smoke

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